Last night I showed how a member of the Body of Christ was disobeying God when they participate in the practice in most of Christianity of Communion, Mass, Eucharist, Sacraments, The Lord’s Supper. No matter how they try to water it down in some churches it is still considered a requirement for salvation (don’t believe me then pass on accepting it tomorrow and see what they do) and in all churches that “celebrate” or practice this tradition it is considered to be the body and blood of Christ literally (they may try to say it is a symbol of it but if you dig into the main denomination or sects statements of faith and why they practice the traditions they do you will find they believe just as Catholicism does) which is an outright disobeying of God’s command to Gentiles as well as Jews not to consume blood in any way and it rejects Christ’s once for all death on Calvary when He said “it is finished” by making the believer a partner in redemption by the work of taking the sacraments to make them closer or one with Christ. In light of that I wanted to share this sermon by Grace Ambassadors that explains what communion really is and what it not. Folks it is not the Mass or Nazarene nibble, wafers or crackers and a jigger cup of juice or dunking into a chalice, okay. It’s not and to think and do that tradition is idolatrous and wrong. What it is, is a gathering of members of the body of Christ for a meal where they are in communion or oneness as members of Christ’s body – and every meal I have ever eaten has bread of some form and something to drink (not wine necessarily nowadays but a liquid) – where they eat together, fellowship in and celebrating who they are in Christ as they have a real meal together just as Jesus did with His disciples the night before he died. And again at least twice after he rose again, so it technically he had “come again” after His death which is what he said when he recounted the events of that night and the following day to Paul as we read in 1 Corinthians 11:26-34. Please seek God’s will and guidance on this as found in His Holy word to you today found specifically in Romans through Philemon and stop blindly following the traditions of men.
I usually share a song on Sunday nights but tonight I instead want to share a passage of Scripture I think is one of the most important ones we as members of the Body of Christ can learn. Now when I say learn I really do mean it, it would reward us greatly if we memorized this passage as it grounds and assures us if what Christ did for us, why and who we are in Him. It’s the first passage nee believers ought to really commit to their hearts and one that any believer will cherish and treasure if they make it a point to memorize it. Yes, I said memorize scripture, it is what the Bible tells us to do:
Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. Psalms 119:11 KJV
That is true in any age and Dispensation, a principle that bears adhering to today in the age of grace as much as when it was penned by David. It doesn’t take long to memorize God’s word, particularly if you use the KJV as it lends itself well to it. One if my favorite methods is to jot a verse down on a small paper or in a notepad and then repeat it a bunch using the 7’s trick. What’s that you ask; simply repeat a verse or passage 7 times in a row, 7 times a day for 7 days. Then you say it once a day for 7 days , then 7 weeks, 7 months. By the end of that first week it’s locked in short term memory and then the additional repetition locks it in long term. I add a new verse each week and start the process with it dropping older verses down accordingly. My son and I have memorized entire chapters using this method.
Do what’s the passage that is so important I’d tell you to memorize eleven verses : Romans 5:1-11. I challenge you to use the 7’s method to memorize Romans 5:1-11.
Over the next month I will be continuing to teach the littles at the Big, my name for the Church where my husband and I work. He’s the facilities manager and I’m the toddler teacher, we are not members of this church by the way as it is steeped in Christendom and man made traditions – it’s basically apostate, but we know God can use us there to reach out to people with the gospel of His grace and I am starting with the littles and their families. Basically I am trying to get them grounded in grace, right division and the gospel of God’s grace – Christ and His death to pay for our sins, burial to remove them and His resurrection for our justification. I figure if I get a solid foundation laid then as they grow older and, I pray, trust Christ’s finished work on the cross for their salvation then they will have a good start.
So this month and next we are learning Ephesians 6:10-11 and a very catchy song that covers the rest of the passage. I have made simple flashcards to teach the verses and a slideshow the parents can is at home. I live teaching this passage early on as it helps them understand that they have protection and power in Christ and the imagery is awesome. The wording also lends itself well to memorizing as my class which ranges from 22 months to just over 3 years old has proved as they learned verse 10 in a week. I simply say the verse using the flashcards several times throughout the morning, saying every word with the kids at first but by the end of the service having them say it mostly alone. The slide show of the flashcards is below and next week I plan to share the “Armor of God” song I play during play periods and transitional times as well as how it can be used to teach the full passage.
I am going to teach on a somewhat misunderstood and misrepresented truth called the gap that explains precisely why God is forming the Body of Christ and sheds much light on who Satan is and what his agenda is. Before I start though let me be 100% clear on something, I mean crystal okay.
I am not an evolutionist, never have been (even before I got saved that seemed like a ginormous pill to swallow and I didn’t buy it), and I never will be. I am a complete creationist – I believe in the beginning God and I believe our earth of today was created in six literal 24 hour days. I am not “trying to accommodate the evolutionary ages” as Henry Morris and other opponents of the gap like to falsely claim of all who see the gap. The gap theory as they call it was not developed in the 1800’s to give the great ages evolution demands.
Macro evolution, which is what they are referring to by the term evolution, is impossible no matter how much time is allowed. Nothing didn’t explode into rocks that got rained on and made soup which somehow came alive and eventually became the complex creatures God created.
“First I was tadpole long and thin, then I was a frog for with my tail tucked in, then I was a monkey swinging from a tree, now I’m a doctor with a PhD.”
Is never gonna be anything more than a ridiculous fairytale no matter how much scientists so called repeat it. So let’s look at a brief rundown of the history of the gap so you won’t be led astray by the lies of those who don’t understand God’s Word rightly divided and rely on modern perversions and scholars so called to oppose it (I am talking about the creationists like Morris and the evolutionists here!)
The going story is that a preacher from the 1800’s, Chalmers (1780-1847), invented the gap as a compromise that accommodated Darwin’s theory of evolution. I’m gonna call bunko on that. Darwin wrote his theory in 1859, twelve years AFTER Chalmer’s died. The gap couldn’t possibly have been invented to support Darwin’s theory. Besides that rather too obvious to ignore truth there’s the fact that Chalmer’s was NOT an evolutionist, wasn’t the first to teach the gap (in fact he credits it to Episcoupis who lived from 1583-1643), and believed in the six 24 hour days of Genesis 1. Well just read what Chalmers says about gap creationism and Genesis 1:1
“My own opinion, as published in 1814, is that it forms no part of the first day but refers to a period of indefinite antiquity when God created the worlds out of nothing. The commencement of the first day’s work I hold to be the moving of God’s Spirit upon the face of the waters.”
Pember (1837-1910), a Plymouth Brethern preacher taught the gap in his book “Earth’s Earliest Ages”; as did Bullinger, Scofield, Larkin and pretty much every dispensational author taught the gap.
I say all this not to say I agree with these men or that it is their belief in the gap that influences my belief in it, as I do not base my views on any issue on the opinions and ideas of men but solely on God’s Word. I first came to see the gap through my studies of God’s Word alone, I mention them only to show that people do see it.
Scripture doesn’t say precisely how old the earth is and creationists who dogmatically insist it is 6,000 years old make a mistake as they reject outright several verses of the Bible that show the gap. God didn’t say when He originally created the earth in Genesis 1:1 and thus we can’t know the time elapsed between 1:1 and 1:2 when it’s reconstruction began. Nor is the time really the important issue. The real issue is why was it reconstructed?
Now let me just make one observation here. I know we like to think we are the end all and be all of everything but seriously what do you think God was doing before he made man about 6,000 years ago? Just sitting up there somewhere twiddling His thumbs and thinking “Hmmm, maybe we should do something.” Trust me our infinite and eternal God was not just doing nothing for eternity past, ok.
Opponents of the gap try to claim there is no Biblical support for it, no Scriptural reason to believe there is a gap. They try to say we are following man and not the Bible but that couldn’t be farther from the truth as I am about to show with just 10 of the numerous verses that point to the gap like flashing neon arrows.
1. Paul referred to Genesis 1:2-4 as a type of salvation in the verses below:
“For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” (2 Corinthians 4:6)
Man was created, then ruined by sin, but when we believe on Christ we are regenerated.
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10)
God used His Spirit and His Word to bring us out of darkness into light!
“To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.” (Acts 26:18)
The gap gives us a depiction of a fallen ruined creation succeeding it’s ruined past and being reborn a new creature.
2. There has been rebellion against God in both heaven before the world began and earth since it began. This is evident by God’s two-fold purpose to restore all things both heavenly and earthly back to His government.
“For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:” (Colossians 1:16)
God’s purpose to establish His kingdom on earth has to do do with Israel and has been fore told by His prophets since the world began.
“Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.” (Acts 3:21)
The mystery of the Body of Christ has to with the heavens however and was a secret hidden in God until revealed by the risen glorified Christ to Paul.
“Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,” (2 Timothy 1:9)
The Body of Christ is God’s response to the rebellion among the heavenly host in eternity past. It is His answer to the challenge of Lucifer at his fall before the world began. We know that Angles existed when God laid the foundations of the earth and set the boundaries of the seas as we learn in Job 38:1-11 (for the sake of space I’ll let you read that on your own). If God had created the angels during the first six days of which we are given so much detail why are they left out of the record? Because they were made before day one even began in Genesis 1:3, they were created in Genesis 1:1 in eternity past and that is why they rejoiced at the words “Let there be Light”! Adam was placed in the very area where God’s city and throne once stood on the original earth. That made Lucifer pretty mad and he set about his diabolical plan to usurp the dominion God gave Adam.
3. Every verses in Genesis 1 after 1:1 begins with “And” thus always moving the narrative forward, never referring to the previous verse. Verse 2 is not a description of verse 1 which ends with a period but is the next step. The descriptive language of 1:2 matches other verses that clearly speak of judgement.
“I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.” (Jeremiah 4:23)
How in this only other time the phrase “without form, and void” is used in Scripture did it get in this ruined condition? In Jeremiah 4:26 we see the answer.
“I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the LORD, and by his fierce anger.” (Jeremiah 4:26)
It is clear that Jeremiah is talking about a yet future judgement when we read the full passage, but by comparing Scripture with Scripture as taught in 1 Corinthians 2:13 we can see that the earth becomes “without form and void” as the result of God’s judgement. Further emphasizing this are the words “deep” and “darkness”which are often associated with judgement in the Bible. Study it out and you’ll see.
4. God just outright said He didn’t create the earth in vain.
“For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.” (Isaiah 45:18)
God doesn’t create in stages; it doesn’t say he created the beasts and they were without form and void. To suggest He spoke the earth that way insults and doubts His
“…his work is perfect:…” (Deuteronomy 32:4)
5. Opponents say that by believing there is a gap we are reading something into the passage that is not there. Come on, you guys know me well enough by now to know that is not true. I am a literalist through and through, I don’t spiritualize, allegorize or add to Scripture at all. I read the words and let them say what they say in the plain, normal reading of it. Besides there are other gaps in the Bible and they don’t mind those gaps. Take this passage in Daniel:
“And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” (Daniel 9:26-27)
Big ole gapping gap there if we cross reference it – Jesus died almost 2,000 years ago but that semicolon has been going on pretty long now. There are gaps and just because God doesn’t spell out plainly why judgement occurred in Genesis 1 in no way implies it didn’t occur. We must always compare scripture with scripture in order to gain a full spiritual understanding of God’s plan and purpose. That’s why we are told to do so in verses such as:
“Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.” (2 Peter 1:20)
6. “Created” does not mean the same thing as “made”. Created means to bring into existence out of nothing while made means to use pre-existing materials to form something. “Created” is only used twice in the six days while “made” is used often even in the same passage as “created” thus further emphasizing the difference in meaning as they are used about different aspects of the same subject. God created mans soul when He created Him in His image but he made man’s body from the dust of the ground. He created the sea life also but the plant life was “brought forth” out of the earth from what was already there.
7. “Replenish the earth” was the command given to Adam in the garden as well as to Noah after the Flood in Genesis 9:1. Adam was a son of God just as the Angels arenas it was sons of God, Angels, on the earth before Adam, the original earth that is. Corrupt translations of the Bible use the word “fill” rather than “replenish” in Genesis 1:28.
“And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” (Genesis 1:28)
But there is a big difference between the word “fill” which is what God used in reference to the sea life (side note: there wasn’t any sea on the original earth in eternity past just as Revelation 21:1 tells us there won’t be one on the new earth in eternity future; and the word “replenish” which means it was already filled once and is being refilled again.
8. The Reginald earth’s destruction by water is referenced in this passage:
“And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:” (2 Peter 3:4-6)
Opponents of the gap try to say that it’s talking about the Flood of Noah’s day but that doesn’t make sense. The world didn’t”perish” in Noah’s flood, granted a lot of people and animals did but eight people and a whole bunch of animals didn’t perish, and for that matter the earth was just covered in water it didn’t have to be completely reformed! In verse 6 of this passage Peter is speaking of “the beginning of creation” as the context shows by reading verse 4. The past judgement Peter is speaking of corresponds to the future judgement when God will once again destroy the heavens and earth so that he can make a new heaven and earth as verses 8-13 show (you can read those yourselves for space sake, this is getting very long.). It bears noting that the heavens were not destroyed in Noah’s flood either.
9. The connection between history and prophecy points to the gap.
“The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.” (Ecclesiastes 1:9)
There is a correspondence between how the Bible opens and closes in Genesis 1:1 and Revelation 21:1.
We know there is a future rebellion of Satan that will culminate in the destruction of this earth and a new one coming down from heaven as we see in Revelation 20:7-21:1. And so it was in eternity past when Lucifer fell. Earth is the center of the universe (not our solar system) and God will put His city and throne back in it’s rightful place on day in the future, where it once was in eternity past. Thus eternity future corresponds perfectly with eternity past.
10. Gap opponents say that there was no sin or death before Adam sinned but think about that story for a minute. Satan and Eve both sinned before Adam did, (don’t believe me read this post. ). They use this as a proof text:
Without considering that this verse is only talking about the world of mankind. Uhm, Satan’s master plan. Some even say that pointing out the obvious and seeing the gap that is clearly there undermines the gospel! The claim is that if Lucifer fell before Genesis 2:3 then God could not have said that everything He made was good in 1:31. Not true. The first thing God says is good is Light in verse 4, but Lucifer was made and fell between verses 1 and 2. God’s statement in verses 31 is limited to what He had just made in the previous six day from Genesis 1:3-30. He’s talking about this earth and it’s solar system; Satan’s habitation however was not on this earth but is in heaven as the following verses show:
“Behold, he putteth no trust in his saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in his sight.” (Job 15:15)
“Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:” (Ephesians 2:2)
“And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” (Revelation 12:7-9)
God did not call the second heaven, what we call space, good in 1:8!
“And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.” (Genesis 1:8)
I know this was a very long post on the gap however I think it is very clear that the Bible tells us there is a gap between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. Don’t just take my word for it though study it out. Search the Scriptures and see, that’s what I do and it never disappoints me but instead I grow in my walk with God daily as I read and hear what He is teaching me through His Word. In a day or so I will cover the Scriptural narrative of Lucifer’s fall but I think this was plenty for one day. As alway my beloved brothers and sisters in Christ may you rest secure eternally gripped in His glorious grace.